“I am responsible. When anyone, anywhere, reaches out for help, I want the hand of AA always to be there. And for that: I am responsible.”
The AA Responsibility Declaration
Millions of men and women have heard or read about the unique Fellowship called Alcoholics Anonymous since its founding in 1935. Of these, more than 2,000,000 now call themselves members. People who once drank to excess, they finally acknowledged that they could not handle alcohol, and now live a new way of life without it.
AA is concerned solely with the personal recovery and continued sobriety of individual alcoholics who turn to the Fellowship for help. The Fellowship has adopted a policy of “cooperation but not affiliation” with other organizations concerned with the problem of alcoholism. Traditionally, Alcoholics Anonymous does not accept or seek financial support from outside sources, and members preserve personal anonymity in print and broadcast media and otherwise at the public level.
The suggested Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous were devised in the early days of the fellowship and are now used by a multitude of organisations world-wide.
Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous
- We admitted we were powerless over alcohol – that our lives had become unmanageable.
- Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
- Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
- Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
- Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
- Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
- Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
- Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
- Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
- Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
- Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
- Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.
The Twelve Traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous – Short Form
- Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon AA unity.
- For our group purpose there is but one ultimate authority-a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience. Our leaders are but trusted servants; they do not govern.
- The only requirement for AA membership is a desire to stop drinking.
- Each group should be autonomous except in matters affecting other groups or AA as a whole.
- Each group has but one primary purpose-to carry its message to the alcoholic who still suffers.
- An AA group ought never endorse, finance or lend the AA name to any related facility or outside enterprise, lest problems of money, property and prestige divert us from our primary purpose.
- Every AA group ought to be fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions.
- Alcoholics Anonymous should remain forever nonprofessional, but our service centers may employ special workers.
- Alcoholics Anonymous as such, ought never be organized; but we may create service boards or committees directly responsible to those they serve.
- Alcoholics Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the AA name ought never be drawn into public controversy.
- Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio and films.
- Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our Traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.
Copyright – 1952, 1953, 1981 by Alcoholics Anonymous Publishing (now known as Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.) All rights reserved.